privacy notice of Information Practices 

Jewish Family and Child Service of Greater Toronto (JF&CS) 

Privacy Notice of Information Practices

BACKGROUND

Jewish Family and Child Service of Greater Toronto (JF&CS) is a multi-service social service organization that provides a comprehensive set of individual and family services and operates a children’s aid society.  JF&CS is committed to protecting individual privacy, and to maintaining the confidentiality of all personal health information (PHI), as well as personal information (PI), that it holds. 

JF&CS is a Health Information Custodian (HIC) under the Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004 (PHIPA) for many of its programs, and is governed by that legislation. It is also bound by new information protection laws under the Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2017 (CYFSA) in its role as a children’s aid society. These two laws govern how PHI and PI may be collected, used and disclosed, as well as rights that clients have in respect of their information.

YOUR CHILD WELFARE RECORDS

Your child welfare records may include demographic information about you, your contact information, your adoption, fostering and kinship information, record of client visits, the care and support you received during those visits, health history, family history, educational, employment, etc., and information from other providers of care. These records are governed primarily by the CYFSA. Under this legislation, we will dispose of your identifiable information when it is no longer needed for our case management or statutory requirements.

OUR INFORMATION PRACTICES FOR CHILD WELFARE RECORDS

The main purposes for which JF&CS collects, uses, and discloses your personal information, are to:

  • Prevent child abuse (physical, emotional, and sexual) and neglect of children under 18 years

  • Evaluate risk of harm, or actual harm, to children and youth 

  • Assist families by offering supports and services to help them keep their children

  • Develop a plan of care for children who may be separated from their families for placement through fostering, kinship service and kinship in care, and adoption

  • Share information among children’s aid societies if this will assist in providing services

  • Educate our staff and students

  • Receive payment or process, monitor, verify or reimburse claims for payment; 

  • Seek your consent (or consent of a substitute decision-maker) where appropriate

  • Respond to, or initiate, legal proceedings

  • Conduct research (subject to certain rules) and compile statistics

  • Conduct risk management, training and quality improvement activities

  • Fulfill other purposes permitted under or required by law

 

Our collection, use, and disclosure (or sharing) of your personal information in child welfare records is done in accordance with the laws of the Province of Ontario.

YOUR CLIENT RECORD FOR FAMILY SERVICES

Your family services client record includes information relevant to your health, and may include your date of birth, contact information, health number, health history, family health history, details of your physical and mental health and addictions, record of client visits, the care and support you received during those visits, any listed substitute decision-maker, and information from other health care providers. We will dispose of your PHI when it is no longer needed for our case management or statutory requirements.

OUR INFORMATION PRACTICES FOR FAMILY SERVICES CLIENT RECORDS

The main purposes for which we collect, use, and disclose your personal health information, are to:

  • Deliver our programs and services

  • Develop a care plan for you and/or your family

  • Be paid or process payments to assist clients

  • Educate our staff and students

  • Seek your consent (or consent of a substitute decision maker) where appropriate

  • Respond to, or initiate, legal proceedings

  • Plan, allow for the analysis, administration, and management, of our internal operations and programs

  • Conduct research (subject to certain rules) and compile statistics

  • Comply with legal, regulatory,  and accreditation requirements

  • Support (on a de-identified basis) funding submissions, and donor reports

  • Conduct risk management, training, and quality improvement activities

  • Fulfill other purposes permitted or required by law

 

Our collection, use and disclosure (sharing) of your personal health information is done in accordance with Ontario law.

ACCESS TO YOUR RECORD AND CORRECTIONS

With limited exceptions, you have the right to access your record. A reasonable fee may be charged to access your PHI.  In certain situations, you may be denied access to some or all of your record (with any such denial being in accordance with applicable law and explained to you in writing).

 

If you wish to access or correct your record, please contact the Manager of Intake in writing at:

 

Manager of Intake

Jewish Family & Child

4600 Bathurst St.

Toronto, Ontario M2R 3V3

Tel: 416-638-7800

Fax: 416.638-7422

 

We make every effort to ensure that all of your information is recorded accurately. Please let us know if there is something that is incorrect. You have a right to ask for a correction to your record if you disagree with what is recorded. In many cases, we will be able to make the requested correction, however, in other cases, we will ask you to prepare a concise statement of disagreement to be attached to your record.

 

OTHER THIRD PARTIES

Sometimes we receive requests for information from third parties such as the police, government agencies, and people involved in court cases with our clients. We only provide Client Information about service recipients to third parties if:

  • We have the individual’s consent; or

  • There is a court order, search warrant, or urgent demand for records requiring disclosure; or

  • We are legally permitted or required to provide the information.

If you have questions about this, please ask us by contacting the Manager of Intake or our Privacy Officer.

YOUR CHOICES

When you enrol into any of our services or programs, we will seek your consent to share your information with other JF&CS programs you wish to register in, on a need to know basis, in order to provide coordinated and effective service to you. We will not disclose your information to other providers or collect your information from other providers without your consent (unless the law permits us to do so).  We will not disclose your information to family, friends, or other persons, unless you specifically request and consent to such disclosure.

 

When we require and ask for your consent, you may choose to say no. If you say yes, you may change your mind at any time. Once you say no, we will no longer share your information unless you say so. Your choice to say no may be subject to some restrictions under applicable law and reasonable notice. Also, your choice to say no will not have a retroactive effect; this means that we would not be able to un-share information that had previously been shared. Note that JF&CS may not be able to provide ongoing service support should the extent of the withdrawal of consent significantly interfere with our service provision to you.

There are situations where we may collect, use, or disclose your personal information or personal health information without your consent, as permitted or required by law. For example, this is the case in situations where it is necessary to eliminate or reduce a significant risk of serious bodily harm; or to fulfill mandatory reporting obligations under other laws, such as those around child protection.

You have the right to ask that we not share some or all of your client record with any other third party, or even internally, with one or more JF&CS staff members or ask us not to share certain parts of your client record. This is known as asking for a “lockbox”. If you would like to know more, please click here [add link] or ask us for a copy of our “Client Lockbox Information Brochure: How to Restrict Access to Your Personal Record”.

When there is a right to consent, you may make your own decisions if you are ‘capable’. It may be the case that you are capable of making some information privacy decisions, but not others. If you are not capable, you will have a substitute decision-maker, who will make your information decisions on your behalf. Who can act as a substitute decision-maker, and what they have to do, is also set out in law.

For children, there is no set legal age for when you become able to make your own decisions about your client information. If you are capable, you can make your own decisions. However, if you are under the age of 16, there are some additional rules to know:

  • If you are not capable, your parent(s) or other official guardian will make decisions for you as your substitute decision-maker.

  • If you are capable, you will make your own decisions.

  • If you are capable, your parent(s) or guardian will also be allowed to make some decisions about your client information service records. However, they will not be able to make decisions about any records regarding treatment or counseling to which you alone consented.

 

We encourage you to ask your worker questions to find out more about how our privacy requirements affect the services that you and your family receive.

 

HOW WE RETAIN AND DISPOSE OF INFORMATION

The Child Protection Information Network (CPIN) is a provincial information management system used by children’s aid societies (CASs).  CPIN is the primary tool for storing information needed to deliver CAS services, and contains information about children and their families who receive child protection services. It also contains information about caregivers and those who seek to provide care to children in need, such as foster parents, adoptive parents and members of a child’s extended family.

In CPIN, information is stored in person, case and provider records that are designed to hold the unique information for each service. Person, case and provider records are linked when appropriate to create an overall picture of a client’s or caregiver’s child protection services.

For our individual and family services, our Matrix Case Management System (Matrix) is the primary tool for storing client information needed for care provision. The Matrix system predates CPIN, and contains information including details about the client, worker, service date range, services received, and case log details to show all the programs the clients may be involved with, in order to promote the client’s well-being.

 We also have some older paper and electronic case files that predate CPIN and Matrix. All of our older files are linked to Matrix for identification and accessibility. We keep this information because it might be necessary for future cases, and because former service recipients may ask to see their records. When we dispose of client information, we do so securely.

SAFEGUARDS TO MAINTAIN CONFIDENTIALITY

JF&CS uses reasonable physical, technical and administrative safeguards to protect your privacy and to maintain the confidentiality of your information. These safeguards include staff training on privacy, policies and procedures; confidentiality agreements with JF&CS employees, volunteers, and representatives; implementation of a ‘need to know’ policy monitored by access controls; controlled access to the premises; firewalls and virus protection; locked filing cabinets, and other security measures.

FOR MORE INFORMATION OR COMPLAINTS

If you would like a copy of our JF&CS Privacy Policy, please click here [link] or ask your worker for a copy. We encourage you to contact us with any questions, concerns, or complaints you might have about our privacy practices or non-compliance with privacy laws. You can reach our Privacy Officer at:

Compliance and Privacy Officer

Jewish Family & Child

4600 Bathurst St.

Toronto, Ontario M2R 3V3

Tel: 416-638-7800 ext. 6636

Fax: 416.638-7422

Email: privacy@jfandcs.com

 

If you feel that your concerns have not been addressed to your satisfaction or you believe that JF&CS has not complied with Ontario’s health privacy law, you have the right at any time to contact or make a complaint to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.  The Commissioner is the person who has general responsibility for ensuring that privacy laws related to your records are followed.  The Commissioner can be reached at:

Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario

2 Bloor Street East, Suite 1400

Toronto, Ontario M4W 1A8

1-800-387-0073

1-416-325-9195 (fax)

or visit the IPC website at www.ipc.on.ca

CONTACT US

Jewish Family & Child

4600 Bathurst St | 1st Floor

Toronto, ON   M2R 3V3

416.638.7800

info@jfandcs.com

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